Eastern Kentucky University

Poster Title

Pesticides Screening of Wilgreen Lake in Madison County Kentucky

Institution

Eastern Kentucky University

Abstract

Wilgreen Lake in Madison County has displayed characteristics indicative of severe nutrient loading. Agricultural runoff, livestock production, runoff from developed areas, and septic systems are present in the areas surrounding the lake and may be factors contributing to the nutrient loading. These factors have the potential for contributing to the presence of heavy metals and pesticides in the lake waters as well. In order to more clearly assess the environmental health of the lake, a multifaceted study was initiated by scientists from the fields of biology, chemistry, and earth science at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) with the support of the Madison County government. The portion of the study reported here is the initial screening of the lake and its tributaries for the presence of herbicides. To accomplish this, immunological laboratory tests for two common herbicides 2,4-D and metolachlor, were conducted on water samples collected in October, 2007. For each test, about two dozen water samples were collected at various locations and water depths from the lake and its tributaries. The levels of 2,4-D were found to be lower than the limit of detection for the method (2ppb). Tests for the herbicide metolachlor also indicated levels less than the limit of detection for that method (0.05ppb). These results provided a snapshot of the levels of these herbicides in the lake at the time of the study and will be useful for comparison in follow-up studies that have been planned to screen for these and other pesticides in the lake during the active growing season when the application of pesticides in the region surrounding the lake is expected to be higher than pesticide usage in the fall.

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Pesticides Screening of Wilgreen Lake in Madison County Kentucky

Wilgreen Lake in Madison County has displayed characteristics indicative of severe nutrient loading. Agricultural runoff, livestock production, runoff from developed areas, and septic systems are present in the areas surrounding the lake and may be factors contributing to the nutrient loading. These factors have the potential for contributing to the presence of heavy metals and pesticides in the lake waters as well. In order to more clearly assess the environmental health of the lake, a multifaceted study was initiated by scientists from the fields of biology, chemistry, and earth science at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) with the support of the Madison County government. The portion of the study reported here is the initial screening of the lake and its tributaries for the presence of herbicides. To accomplish this, immunological laboratory tests for two common herbicides 2,4-D and metolachlor, were conducted on water samples collected in October, 2007. For each test, about two dozen water samples were collected at various locations and water depths from the lake and its tributaries. The levels of 2,4-D were found to be lower than the limit of detection for the method (2ppb). Tests for the herbicide metolachlor also indicated levels less than the limit of detection for that method (0.05ppb). These results provided a snapshot of the levels of these herbicides in the lake at the time of the study and will be useful for comparison in follow-up studies that have been planned to screen for these and other pesticides in the lake during the active growing season when the application of pesticides in the region surrounding the lake is expected to be higher than pesticide usage in the fall.